Leicester City 0:3 Chelsea
City were no match for Chelsea at the KPS on Saturday evening, the league leaders easing the Champions out with a comfortable 3-0 win…
Claudio Ranieri made three changes to his side with Vardy, Fuchs and Musa returning for Simpson, Ulloa and Gray.
The 3-5-2 formation was tailored to combat Chelsea’s game, but seemed to be an awkward fit that took the players time to adapt to. Although it was City who almost took a second minute lead with their first attack. Musa battled his way past Azpilicueta on the left and fired in a shot from a tight angle that Courtois managed to block.
But Chelsea took a 6th minute lead with City’s defence all at sea. Azpilicueta hoisted a ball into the box which City’s back-line failed to clear despite having two touches. Hazard squared neatly to the unmarked Alonso who curled the ball round Schmeichel and in at the far post.
City bounced back with a decent attacking spell which saw a number of well delivered crosses from Albrighton. One just went behind Vardy, one was headed wide by Chilwell, and the others were snuffed out by Chelsea’s defence.
In the 36th minute, Vardy turned Cahill on the right and fizzed in a low cross which Courtois did well to tip away from Musa.
Chelsea should have gone 2-0 up just before the break when Hazard set Pedro up, but he blazed his chance over from 15 yards.
City had just about matched the best side in the country for 45 minutes, but sadly that wasn’t the case after the break and the game was gone when Alonso repeated his trick of a sixth minute goal.
A Willian free-kick from the right was cleared only as far as Alonso in the D and he was given time to line up a shot that deflected in off Morgan, taking it past Schmeichel’s outstretched hand.
An impressive Chelsea were in complete control of the game at this stage
and Morgan did well to deny Hazard as he attempted to pick his way through the defence.
Ranieri made his first change on the hour, bringing Okazaki on for Huth.
Chelsea continued to pass their way round City: Cahill had an overhead kick blocked by Morgan and then Alonso came within three inches of a hat trick, sending a low shot just wide of the post.
Chelsea put the game beyond doubt in the 71st minute. Kante played the ball into the area, Pedro cleverly backheeled on the spin to Willian on the right, his cross span up off Schmeichel and Pedro was on hand to nod the ball past Morgan.
The rest of the game was a training exercise played out in an emptying stadium.
City’s second half performance had been truly woeful.
Claudio Ranieri didn’t appear to agree with the concensus of opinion: “I’m happy with the performance – we tried to do our best. Of course, I’m not happy that we conceded a goal at the beginning of the first half and the beginning of the second half, but if you take out those two goals, the match was good for us. We closed the space, we mirrored Chelsea with a 3-5-2 and it was good.”
Leicester: Schmeichel, Morgan, Huth (Okazaki 60), Fuchs, Chilwell, Mendy, Drinkwater, Ndidi, Albrighton (Simpson 77), Musa (Gray 71), Vardy. Subs Not Used: Zieler, Wasilewski, King, Kapustka.
Chelsea: Courtois, Alonso, Kante, Hazard (Fabregas 79), Pedro (Loftus-Cheek 84), Moses, Matic, Willian (Batshuayi 84), Cahill, Azpilicueta, Luiz. Subs Not Used: Begovic, Ivanovic, Zouma, Chalobah.
Referee: A Marriner. Attendance: 32,066.
PHOTOS: Simon Kimber
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